On the Cusp of Recognition: The Afro-Mexican Racial Moment in Mexico City


This trip is to record the particular multicultural moment in Mexico City in respect to Afro-descendant recognition. This year is the 100th anniversary of the Mexican Constitution. With revisions to the constitution of Mexico City, Afro-descendants have been given recognition and legal protection for the first time. This research is timely as it is coming within the first time the Mexican census has included a place to count Afro-descendants, state recognition in Oaxaca and Guerrero, as well with international efforts such as the United Nations Decade of the Afro-descendants. My previous research strictly focused on the Pacific Coast. Activities taken in this investigation is an observation of public forums on diversity such as the Mexico City Commission of Human Rights, The Museum of Tolerance and Memory, meeting with scholars, and the Seminario Permanente de Afroindoamerica. From observation of the way afro-decendancy is being discussed, there continues to be an invisibility of Afro-Mexicans and a hypervisibility of Afro-descendant immigrants from other nations. Despite, recent inclusions in the census and Constitution documents, the "Third root" has not reached a place where Afro-Mexican contributions and membership in the society is readily understood. Current debates question the attention given to recent arrivals versus Afro-Mexicans who have had a presence since the colonial period. Recommendations for future researchers is to interrogate the experiences between Afro-descendants in Mexico-both native (colonial) and foreign-born in Mexico City.

Nicole-Marie Cotton
Publication date: 
August 18, 2017
Publication type: 
Student Research